tv CNN Newsroom CNN October 30, 2010 3:00pm-4:00pm EST
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i'm jessica yellin in las vegas. you are watching "ballot bowl," cnn's coverage of the midterm elections. we are taking you to campaign events across the country and we're going to bring you updates on the biggest races in the nation, and tell you how all these races will affect each and every one of us. this is the final push to an election that has enormous import. i'm joined by dana bash in connecticut where there's a senate seat in a very hot race. who was there visiting you, dana? >> president obama. he just wrapped up his rally here to get democrats in the state, particularly in the city to the polls in just three days.
that is the name of the game for president obama as he does that in three states. we're going to go back to alaska. the neck and neck race there for senate between democrat, a republican and an incumbent senator, running as a write-in candidate. then we're going to head back to where you are, jessica, to nevada. that is the most powerful man in the senate, harry reid. he's at serious risk of losing his seat. we're also going to take you to delaware, for an update on one of the most talked about senate races of the year, with christine o'donnell. and then to ohio, that bellwether political state where the governor's race is coming down to the wire. tuesday's elections will have a huge impact on the balance of power in washington. let's take a look at the numbers. there are 255 democrats and 178 republicans in the house right now. the total of 218 is what is
needed by either party to win the majority. that means republicans are going to need to pick up 39 seats on tuesday to gain control of the house. let's go over to the senate side of the capital. there are now 57 democrats and 41 republicans. 51 is the magic number that republicans would need to take the majority from the democrats. now, republicans, that mean it is you do the math, need to pick up ten seats to gain control. if there's a 50-50 tie, democrats would keep control because the vice president would cast the tiebreaking vote and the vice president is, of course, joe biden, a democrat. jess? >> that's right. so with just three days left, we want to know which way voters are leaning. we can't know for sure, because polls are based on assumptions, but we can check in on the poll of polls, which adds together all the big polls and does a
final generic number, caand 48%f likely voters say they would choose a republican candidate, 44% say they would choose a democrat. it gives the gop a four-point margin. that's down from an eight-point advantage that republicans held in last week's poll of polls. and that's one of the reasons why democrats challenge this idea that there is a huge enthusiasm gap, that maybe the republican enthusiasm -- democrats are at least catching up to it. we'll have to see what comes out on election day. as i say, all of these things are based on assumptions, all of these polls can't necessarily give us a looking glass into the future as well as ballot returns. dana, i want to talk about one of the most sort of momentous dramas we'll be watching on tuesday, and that's the u.s. senate to see which way that
shifts. 10 seats is what the republicans need to pick up to take control of the u.s. senate. i think we have a map of what are the 12 places where they could find ten winners. and i'm going to group them and we can talk about them what i think are the most and least likely based on the prognostications. most likely, arkansas, north dakota, indiana likely to go republican. wisconsin, also possibly likely. then colorado, illinois, nevada and pennsylvania, those are sort of the up for grab states. then the states people are saying we think it will trend democrat, california, outside chance a republican could win, washington state, west virginia and connecticut. do you agree with that analysis or take some out? >> no, no, i think that's dead on. i would just talk if you keep the map up, i would continue talking about wisconsin, jessica. wisconsin, you know, the fact
that president obama is not going back there, that is an indicator, along with the polls, that the long-time senator, russ feingold, is in serious trouble. democrats and republicans say that one is pretty much gone. we'll see what happens on tuesday. if you do the math, those four, if you need ten, four are, so six left. and then there are seven really competitive races, pennsylvania, illinois, colorado, washington, west virginia, california. if republicans can pick up six of those seven, that's it, they've got it. but that's a big "if." >> we've been talking about west virginia. that state was a surprise being competitive maybe six weeks ago and now democrats and republicans think that's probably going to stay in democratic hands. but it's fascinating to watch this numbers game because it has
a very real world impact on the direction of the country, policies and politics in washington. >> of course, when they all come back after this election, they have a lame duck session, people will be talking about tax cuts, tax policy and that is something everybody cares about. >> we're going to talk about all of this, the balance of power, why it matters to you and bring you more events from around the country. but first a quick break. stay with us here on "ballot bowl" on cnn. [ male announcer ] it's simple physics...
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and, go to celebrex.com to learn more about how you can move toward relief. celebrex. for a body in motion. welcome back cnn's "ballot bowl." i'm dana bash in connecticut where president obama just wrapped up a rally here a short while ago. it was the second of three rallies that he's holding to get democrats to the polls. he's heading to his home state of illinois to try to keep his former senate seat from going
into republican hands. it doesn't get any more personal than that, right, jessica? i want to ask you about the senate race you've covered more than anybody, and that is the one in california. really, really interesting race between barbara boxer, the sitting democratic senator, and carly fiorina, who is trying to unseat her. >> that's right. carly fiorina is running as a republican on a message of change, that she wants to bring a different voice to washington, d.c. barbara boxer has held this seat for 18 years. barbara boxer has hit back very hard with an aggressive campaign, focused on outsourcing. more than anything else, she's accused carly fiorina of endorsing a policy of outsourcing, pointing out thousands of jobs went overseas while she ran hewlett packard
and this is not the leadership that california needs. people thought boxer might be neck and neck, but boxer is leading 50% to 45% there in california. so that is a state where republicans had been optimistic, but are now feeling a little less hopeful about that one. still, you know, pretty close, but certainly barbara boxer has held onto her lead. something interesting and very human did happen last week. carly fiorina has been struggling as a survivor of breast cancer and has been on the campaign trail while undergoing reconstructive surgery treatments all this year. she would speak about it, but didn't make a big deal of it. last week she got an infection and had to be hospitalized for one day. we caught up with her on wednesday, the day she came back on the campaign trail and here's a little bit of what carly
fiorina was saying on the day she got out. >> this campaign is about jobs, and how jobs are created. this campaign is about holding washington accountable for how they spend their money, and the policies they put in place. and this campaign has been about barbara boxer's 28 years of failed leadership in washington, d.c. this is an amazing success story here. every time i see a success story like this one, i am reminded that if the american people, if the good people of california are given the tools and the opportunities to create jobs, then they'll create jobs. it's when government gets in the way with taxes that are too high or regulations that are too thick or public servants that are out of touch and unaccountable. that's when the trouble starts. we've had plenty of that kind of
trouble with barbara boxer. here we are in october of 2010, and california still -- still struggles with our highest unemployment levels in 70 years. we have had more people in california fall into poverty in the last three years than almost in recorded history. and since the stimulus bill was passed, $810 billion of taxpayer funded money, not only do we learn every day about some other egregious waste of that money, but the reality is, it hasn't created jobs. it hasn't reduced our unemployment rate to 8%. it hasn't created 400,000 jobs in california as barbara boxer promised. in fact, we've lost over 400,000 jobs since that stimulus bill was passed.
in february of '09 when the stimulus bill was passed, our unemployment rate in california was a tragic 10.2%. our unemployment today is 12.4%. 20 counties above 15%. while we struggle here in the state of california with the highest unemployment rates on record, washington, d.c. has added 100,000 bureaucrats in the last 12 months alone. our debt has ticlimbed to over 3 trillion in the last two years from $10.6 trillion. and barbara boxer's answer is to spend more, borrow more, bail out more. but we know that doesn't work, because it hasn't worked. another thing happened in the last couple of months. the 2001-2003 tax cuts are set to expire, and that means on
january 1st, every middle class family in california is going to face a $1,600 tax increase. in fact, families here in the sacramento area are going to face an over $1,700 fax increase. every family owned business is going to face a 55% death tax on january 1st. and every small business is going to face a tax increase, as well. of course, we know, larry knows, we know if we want to get the job creation engine going in our state and in our nation again, then we have to pay particular attention to small businesses and family owned businesses, because that's where most people get their start. >> carly fiorina, the republican nominee for u.s. senate in california, delivering her economic message earlier this week.
fiorina, a very successful businesswoman, is one of those self-funders this election cycle. i want to go over to dana bash where there's another big self-funder in the race, linda mcma hon. dana? >> reporter: that's right. she's the republican candidate for senate here. she's spent about $50 million of her own money, and at this point, it doesn't look like it's going to get her a senate seat. very, very fascinating here and also in california. we want to let our viewers know that we believe that jon stewart and stephen colbert are going to hold a press conference after their rally on the mall. we also want to make sure that we are going to give you the latest news on the terror investigation, including the fact that a woman is under arrest in yemen. also, new information on the synagogue, at least one of them in chicago that was supposed to be the target of one of those explosive packages. more on that right after the break.
hello, i'm fredricka whitfield in atlanta. we want to bring you up to date on the terror threat that has investigators swarming over new details are arising from great britain, on to the u.s. we're understanding that information is coming in that one of the chicago targets of those explosive devices that were in plane cargo was bound for chicago, specifically a synagogue. it's identified as a small synagogue in chicago with about 100 in the congregation.
we're also learning new developments out of yemen that police have arrested a female suspect in connection with that foiled terror plot. what more do we know about the arrest of this woman and whether others are soon to follow? >> reporter: fredricka, it's been a rapidly developing story the past 24 hoarse in yemen from the details on the ground there. yemen's president came out and gave a press conference, spoke about the fact that there had been a terror suspect, a female suspect whose house had been surrounded. this is in sanaa, yemen's capital city. she was suspected to being linked to the packages sent out. she's the main suspect in having sent out those parcels with the explosive materials in them.
after that statement, security officials, defense ministry officials told us that they have now arrested that suspect. we don't have any details about this woman. the president repeatedly referred to her as a girl. we don't know her age. we only know she's a resident of sanaa. now, also yemen's president announced in his press conference that they're working with the international community with the u.s. and the uk to eradicate yemen of al qaeda. so they continue to rely on help from other countries with this problem. yemeni officials said there are as many as 400 active al qaeda members in yemen right now, but they are in rugged, mountainous area where is the government doesn't have any power. so they're able to operate at will. yemen's president said they need to get help from the international community to get this problem under control. >> muhammad, thanks so much, from baghdad.
of course, we'll get back to more of the "ballot bowl." we're also going to zero in on the tea party movement and its influence on the elections just three days away. our shannon travis has been digging for 18 months and has a new documentary called "boiling point." he'll be along to talk more about that. for those of us who have lactose intolerance, let's raise a glass to cookies just out of the oven. to the morning bowl of cereal. and to lactaid® milk. easy to digest and with all the calcium and vitamin d of regular milk. [ female announcer ] lactaid®. the original lactose-free milk. [ female announcer ] last year, the u.s. alone used over 39 billion plastic bottles of water. ♪ that's enough to stretch around the earth over 190 times. ♪ each brita filter can take up to 300 of those bottles
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personal pricing now on brakes. tell us what you want to pay. we do our best to make that work. deal! my money. my choice. my meineke. welcome back to cnn's "ballot bowl" where we bring you live political events from around the country in this final weekend before the midterm elections that will determine so much about the next year, even the next ten years of who will control washington and determine the direction of this country for some time to come.
one of the issues, the tea party. what kind of role will they play going into the future? our own shannon travis has been on the road, has a documentary tonight and we'll talk to him about what he's learned traveling the country with the tea party. dana bash is joining us from bridgeport, connecticut where the president just spoke. quite a rally there. a lot of energy in that crowd. >> certainly a lot of energy and energy is the name of the game. turning energy into walking and going to the polls on tuesday, that is what it is all about for the president today. jessica, we're going to talk in a little while about a man i covered a lot in 2008, you covered a lot in 2010 in his race to beat back a fellow republican who wanted his senate seat. we're talking about john mccain. john mccain is now pretty much in the clear. he is way ahead of the democrat there to -- in the senate race,
but he's still campaigning, just three days away. he's staying out there, but he's also campaigning with another person who has become a national figure in the state of arizona, and that is governor january brewer. she's also on the ballot, the two will be campaigning live in about an hour and we're going to talk our viewers there, as well. stay with us. look at all this stuff for coffee. oh there's tons. french presses, espresso tampers, filters. it can get really complicated. not nearly as complicated as shipping it, though. i mean shipping is a hassle. not with priority mail flat rate boxes from the postal service. if it fits it ships anywhere in the country for a low flat rate. that is easy. best news i've heard all day! i'm soooo amped! i mean not amped. excited. well, sort of amped. really kind of in between. have you ever thought about decaf? do you think that would help? yeah. priority mail flat rate shipping starts at just $4.90, only from the postal service. a simpler way to ship.
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welcome back to cnn's "ballot bowl." we are following the campaign events all across the country on this frenzied final weekend of the 2010 campaign ahead of tuesday's elections all across the country. in a moment, we're going to bring you a press conference. we have jon stewart and stephen colbert after their rally. very unconventional rally on the national mall. turns out it wasn't as political as we thought.
we didn't know what to expect. it was like more of a rock and roll concert, comedy and a political message at the end. >> yeah and we got to hear "love train." one of the big factors this season, as everybody knows, is the tea party and the tea party express has played a real role in this election. they have endorsed candidates who have surged to become the republican nominees in nevada, sharron angle challenging harry reid. in colorado, christine o'donnell in delaware. our own shannon travis has been -- i think it's been 18 months he's been with the tea party express, following them, watching their message and political game. and shannon has a documentary on cnn tonight. we want to ask you a little bit about the documentary.
but tell us, as you've been with us in these closing days, what's the closing message you heard from the tea party express? >> the closing message is, you have to seal the deal. there's been all of this excitement, all of these bus tours and people going out to rallies for the past 18 months. but now the message is, hey, all of that will be for naught if we don't get people to the polls. if they don't go to the polls, if they don't get their neighbors and friends and other people they have fired up over the past few months out to the polls. the message right now is get out there and vote. >> when you're with the tea party express, to what extent does it feel grassroots and to what extent does it feel like they are a big organization behind it or influencing it in any way? >> that's one of the questions that we explore in the documentary tonight.
is it being funded by people like you or i sending in $5 or $10 small donations? or is it as their critics say, being funded by billionaires pouring in money to further their own self-interests? one of the critical questions a lot of people wonder about and one of the things we tackle in this documentary tonight. >> so you're not going to answer, you're just teasing ahead to the documentary. >> i got to tease up a little bit. >> well, let me ask you about this, sarah palin obviously is a darling of the tea party movement. she said to you that -- she sort of said the republican party better be on board with the tea party message after this election, otherwise the republican party will be through. what did you take from that? >> you know, sarah palin arguably is the only person in the republican party who has as
much love from the tea party movement. she's the only one really tweaking, quote unquote establishment republicans. you heard her say "man up, you establishment republicans, and support these tea party candidates." she called some of they can chicken. i would be curious to hear her name names. but she's telling the establishment look, i am putting a lot of political -- it's a gamble if come today a lot of these tea party candidates don't do well, will that make her stock lower a little? or if they do well, would that make her possibly -- rise her stock in terms of a 2012 presidential bid? >> a lot of gendered words this season. we'll have to explore them.
shannon, thanks so much for joining us. we'll be tuning in to watch your documentary, and there is a lot you've never seen and don't know about the tea party movement. if you want to know more, don't miss this documentary tonight at sunday night at 8:00 eastern. stay with us here at "ballot bowl." we'll come back with more political events on the other side of this break. [ j. weissman ] it was 1975. my professor at berkeley asked me if i wanted to change the world. i said "sure." "well, let's grow some algae." and that's what started it. exxonmobil and synthetic genomics have built a new facility to identify the most productive strains of algae. algae are amazing little critters. they secrete oil, which we could turn into biofuels. they also absorb co2. we're hoping to supplement the fuels that we use in our vehicles, and to do this at a large enough scale to someday help meet the world's energy demands.
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welcome back to cnn's "ballot bowl." we have been taking you to live political events going on all across the country in this final campaign weekend of the midterm elections this year, and one of the events we saw earlier was the big rally on the mall with stephen colbert and jon stewart. they're holding a press conference right now. >> question over there? >> i was wondering what your plans are from here? [ inaudible ]
are you going to plan morallies? >> we have a show on monday, and we got to go right back. we have a live show on tuesday. normally that would be the hardest thing we do this year. so we got to go home for two days. we have a wednesday show, too. and then we have to keep doing them until thanksgiving. >> this young lady over here. >> what advice do you have -- >> you should not be able to just make the names up. i don't think that's fair. >> what advice do you have for citizens who want to get engaged and change the government? >> they should definitely get engaged. i think that sounds fine. >> how? >> how would you do that? [ inaudible ] >> how about just talking.
>> i heard you. [ inaudible ] >> nice to see you. >> a donation push to kind of encourage us to do a rally, and two days ago, two days ago you had $500,000 -- >> i'm asking you this, what role did the internet campaign play for you to hold this rally? >> the truth is, it was a nice thing, but we've been planning this and the thought of it for a few months prior, and i had made
the deposit down on the mall over the summer. >> it was really nice -- it was really nice when we saw the people were urging us to do a rally. we had a conversation, it was like oh, this is not a -- this is not that crazy of a thing. [ inaudible ] it was a really nice validation of what we were thinking about attempting. [ inaudible ] >> i just stayed up late last night and just wrote till i was done and that was about it. just wanted to speak a little bit from the heart.
>> i improvised everything i did. right off the top. >> you spoke at the rally about the idea of media and pundits having boundaries established by whomever. do you really believe on your end that you have boundaries as a comedian, as a performer, as a fake pundit or real pundit that you have to set for yourselves and there are places that you're not going to go? >> no, the boundaries we set for ourselves are based on our own sense of decency, not some preor gained category of people who are allowed to speak seriously and people who must only speak in jokes or rhyme. our shows are just a reflection of our points of view. i'm --
>> mr. stewart, have you -- >> i'm wearing a flannel shirt. >> it's very lovely. have you spoken to rick sanchez since the incident? >> since the incident? you mean the event. yeah, he called me a few days later and we spoke. >> can you tell what he said? [ inaudible ] >> i just said, i get it. he was very kind. again, we've all had moments.
it's just human and he's not a bad guy in any way and i was happy to talk to him. >> he has yet to call me. >> just wanted to know the most difficult part of the entire rally for you guys to pull off? >> i think it was hitting the high notes. >> i can tell you from my perspective -- >> jon stewart and stephen colbert taking questions after their unconventional rally on the national mall earlier today. you heard jon stewart hitting the high note. it wasn't just sheryl crow and kid rock singing, we did hear jon stewart and stephen colbert attempt to sing. as we monitor that, we want to tell you we're watching other races all across the country, including one in the middle of the country, a real bellwether state and that's ohio. democratic governor ted
strickland is up for re-election. he's in a neck and neck race. we have peter hamby on the ground in ohio. we'll have a whole lot more on this day three before election day. frenzied weekend. we'll be right back. ♪ [ male announcer ] at ge capital, we're out there every day with clients like jetblue -- financing their fleet, sharing our expertise, and working with people who are changing the face of business in america. after 25 years in the aviation business, i kind of feel like if you're not having fun at what you do, then you've got the wrong job. my landing was better than yours. no, it wasn't. yes, it was. was not. yes, it was. what do you think? take one of the big ones out? nah.
welcome back to cnn's "ballot bowl," the final weekend before the midterm elections. we have been bringing you political events from across the country. we also have reporters, political reporters stationed across the country. they are bringing us not only on air but also online the latest developments at major rallies
and events, including a fascinating moment where president obama was at an event and a candidate's wife went into labor. that's coming up. i want to toss it over to dana bash who is in a state with a major race, connecticut. >> that's right, jessica. president obama was here a short while ago. he's now in illinois for the third of three rallies today to try to get out the democratic vote. we want to talk about the state of ohio. that is, of course, a bellwether state. there is a lot at stake in that state. democrats are running very hard, have been across the board in many cases pretty far behind. ted strickland was elected in 2006. john kasich, who is a former budget chairman in the house, he is running there for the governor. he's ahead of strickland in the
polls. it looks like it's tightening a little bit. so john boehner is the man in line to be the speaker of the house should republicans take the majority on tuesday. he is from the state of ohio, so he was out doing something we haven't seen him do very much, he was out campaigning. he's been taking a low profile, but not today. >> i grew up in an america where you could grow up and be anything you wanted to be and do anything you wanted to do. i was lucky enough to own a small business and to turn it into a successful business. along the way i got involved in my neighborhood homeowner's association and i ended up in the united states congress. it could still happen to you. i went to washington to get the government's hands on the goose that was laying the golden egg. when you look around america and you look at the freedom we have to invest in ourselves and our families, to invest in our businesses, government continues to get in the way. you all know that the bigger the
government gets, the smaller the american people get. you all know that the government takes from you, the less you have to invest in yourself, your family, your business and your community. it's time we tell washington it's time for them to get their hands off the goose that was laying the golden egg. if you're tired of all the double talk, you have to elect bill johnson to the united states congress. [ applause ] if you want to send nancy pelosi packing her bags back to san francisco, elect bill johnson. ladies and gentlemen, remember one thing. we live in america. you really can grow up and be everything that you want to be or anything that you want to be. but all of you in this crowd
know that if we don't turn this country around, the future for our kids and grand kids can't going to be as bright. we've got to fight for a smaller, more accountable government in washington, d.c. the way we do that is we elect bill johnson and send charlie wilson back to wherever he is from this this district. listen, you all know this. remember when ronald reagan was president? we had bob hope, we had johnny cash. today we've got president obama, but we have no hope and we have no cash. god bless all of you! [ applause ] >> john boehner on a final campaign swing through his home state of ohio, campaigning for candidates in his state. not necessarily for the house of representatives.
of course, it is republicans in the house of representatives he needs to get elected to atape his goal, which is to become the speaker of the house after tuesday's election. i want to go to our political producer, peter hamby. you've been traveling the country. ohio, obviously is a very, very interesting state, because all of these races are so fascinating. but because it had been so democratic, but right now it looks like republicans are poised to do really well across the board. >> it really does. this john boehner tour around ohio, it's interesting because he's going to some places that are competitive. i'm in the sixth district right now, which is considered a tossup in the eastern part of the state. but he's also going to some conservative leaning pockets of the state, because he knows that beyond just electing republicans to the house here, the governor's race really is a huge prize, and one of the things
about the governor's race between strickland and kasich, kasich's lead has disappeared. so the governor's race is a toss up. you've seen kasich move to the right to drive upturnout among republicans and conservatives. so you see boehner, the hometown guy trying to gin up support saying this race will be decided based on turnout. that's another reason you're going to see president obama in cleveland tomorrow to rally support in northeast ohio, which is heavily democratic. >> it sure is heavily democratic. it's one thing to do it closer where john boehner is from. what are you seeing, peter, in the polls and more specifically with the voters that you're talking to on the ground, is it tightening up? democrats have poured so much in there in terms of getting out the vote especially with unions, is that helping?